Crèche du Bois Gentil (“Friendly Forest Crèche” )
Since 2007 the Paparoa Wildlife Trust has been utilising BNZONE™ as a management tool to boost recruitment of juvenile kiwi back into the Paparoa Range.
Maximising survival for kiwi chicks hatched in captivity requires a predator safe and productive crèche in which to raise young kiwi before release back into the wild. When the PWT project started there was no such facility for gsk/roroa anywhere in the country and so we had to create one of our own.
In 2009 after two seasons using Adele Island in the Abel Tasman (with mixed results) as a temporary crèche site the PWT dream of our own crèche close to the Paparoa Range was realised. A generous benefactor had been found who was prepared to purchase land and fence off 12.5 ha of lush lowland beech forest and pasture to provide a predator free sanctuary where chicks would grow to the ideal predator safe weight of 1200g.
This crèche named ‘Bois Gentil’ was opened in January 2010 and became the first pest proof crèche specifically for kiwi in the South Island and the only facility in NZ for great spotted kiwi.
Since 2010 we have raised more than 25 gsk/roroa chicks in this crèche.
Not only is this crèche a huge asset for the kiwi who live there but it has become a valuable tool for the PWT to use in the never ending field of advocacy and public relations. Every year we hold public open days where we invite the community as a whole to come and view the facility and learn about the important work we are doing. It is an achievable for people of all ages and physical abilities to get to and is the only option for most people to get to view young gsk chicks in a semi wild environment.
In addition to public opendays we also host businesses, schools and any group or people who wish to see and learn about our project.